50 Best Community Colleges of 2021

The best community colleges provide an effective springboard into higher education, offering students high-quality two-year degree programs in a wide range of disciplines. The top rated community colleges offer a broad selection of associate’s degrees, affordable tuition rates, and strong partnerships with public four-year schools so that students can easily transfer their credits into accredited bachelor’s degree programs.

50 Best Community Colleges of 2021

What is a community college?

A community college is a public two-year college that awards associate degrees as well as some professional certifications. Community colleges typically attract students drawn from the surrounding region. Top community colleges tend to offer a wide selection of associate degrees spanning a variety of disciplines. Community colleges can be especially attractive to students interested in getting an affordable start on a four-year degree. So too, these schools appeal to students seeking professional two-year degrees designed to provide technical and practical skills for immediate entrance into the job market.

We’ve identified 839 community colleges in the US. In order to be included in this list of the best community colleges, a school needs to satisfy the following three conditions:

These are the best community colleges in the US!”
  1. It must be fully accredited.
  2. It must have a student body of at least 1,000 students.
  3. It must primarily provide two-year, or associate, degree programs (along with certificate credentials in most cases).
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How do we determine the best community colleges?

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great. For associate degree rankings, we rank the best two-year colleges based upon what we call “Concentrated Influence.” Concentrated Influence takes the combined influence score of a college’s top academic influencers (including faculty and alums) and divides it by the school’s total number of students.

Using concentrated influence gives small and mid-sized schools an opportunity to shine by taking away the size advantage of larger schools. A small school with proportionately more influential faculty than a large school, whose influence in absolute terms may be bigger, will nonetheless score higher in a concentrated influence ranking. Our approach highlights community colleges that truly rank for excellence, regardless of size.

If you are serious about finding the best community colleges for an associate’s degree or professional certification, you should be asking where the most influential professors are teaching, and whether their graduates themselves are advancing the school’s reputation for academic excellence.

Most ranking sites rely on an opaque combination of reputation surveys and arbitrary performance metrics. Concentrated Influence provides a ranking which is free from bias, insulated from manipulation, and reflective of real-world educational outcomes.

Find out more about our ranking methodology here.

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The Best Community Colleges in the U.S.

  1. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    27%

    Student body

    7K

    What is Anne Arundel Community College known for?

    Anne Arundel Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Law
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Mathematics
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

    • Robin P. Newhouse professor of nursing
    • Diane Black, United States Representative
    • David G. Boschert, former member of Maryland House of Delegates
    • Douglas B. Byerly, musician
    • Robert A. Costa, member of Maryland House of Delegates, 2003–2013
    • Brian Crecente editor of Kotaku, 2004–present
    • Steven Thomas Fischer, two-time Emmy nominated film producer
    • Ronald Malfi horror novelist
    • C. Edward Middlebrooks, former Maryland State Senator, 1995–1999
    • Robert R. Neall (1971), member of Maryland House of Delegates, 1975–1987. Anne Arundel County Executive, 1990–1994
    • Michael Orzechowski, playwright
    • Travis Pastrana motocross racer
    • Edward Snowden attended but did not graduate
    • Darrell Williams, former member of White House Communications Agency, (1991-1997 and 1998–2004)
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  2. #2

    Roxbury Community College

    Roxbury Crossing , MA

    Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Roxbury Community College known for?

    Roxbury Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Engineering
    • Physics
    • Biology
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Sociology
    REQUEST INFO
  3. Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Graduation

    24%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Eastern Maine Community College known for?

    Eastern Maine Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Computer Science
    REQUEST INFO
  4. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    24%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Springfield Technical Community College known for?

    Springfield Technical Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Education
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
    • Mathematics
    • Criminal Justice
    • Nursing
    • Physics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  5. #5

    College of Marin

    Kentfield , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    30%

    Student body

    3K

    What is College of Marin known for?

    College of Marin’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • Business
    • Anthropology
    • Nursing
    • Philosophy
    • Literature
    • History
    • Medical
    • Political Science
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  6. #6

    Los Angeles City College

    Los Angeles , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    25%

    Student body

    9K

    What is Los Angeles City College known for?

    Los Angeles City College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Education
    • Business
    • Communications
    • Political Science
    • Law
    • Psychology
    • Engineering
    • Medical
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  7. Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Graduation

    32%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Lamar Institute of Technology known for?

    Lamar Institute of Technology’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Biology
    REQUEST INFO
  8. Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Kennedy–King College known for?

    Kennedy–King College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Communications
    • Computer Science
    • Social Work
    • Criminal Justice
    • Biology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  9. Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    3K

    What is West Kentucky Community and Technical College known for?

    West Kentucky Community and Technical College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  10. Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Graduation

    21%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Lamar State College–Port Arthur known for?

    Lamar State College–Port Arthur’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Chemistry
    • Criminal Justice
    • Computer Science
    • Communications
    • Nursing
    REQUEST INFO
  11. #11

    Montgomery College

    Rockville , MD

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    14K

    What is Montgomery College known for?

    Montgomery College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Communications
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice
    • Sociology
    • Social Work
    REQUEST INFO
  12. #12

    Mitchell Community College

    Statesville , NC

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Mitchell Community College known for?

    Mitchell Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  13. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    24%

    Student body

    2K

    What is University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College known for?

    University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Communications
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Nursing
    REQUEST INFO
  14. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    17%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Northern Essex Community College known for?

    Northern Essex Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Biology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Social Work
    • Nursing

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  15. #15

    Eastern Arizona College

    Thatcher , AZ

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    46%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Eastern Arizona College known for?

    Eastern Arizona College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Chemistry
    • Physics
    • Business
    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Biology
    • History
    • Medical
    • Earth Sciences
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  16. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    20%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Massachusetts Bay Community College known for?

    Massachusetts Bay Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Sociology
    • Computer Science
    • Literature
    • Social Work
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Nursing
    REQUEST INFO
  17. #17

    County College of Morris

    Randolph , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Graduation

    35%

    Student body

    5K

    What is County College of Morris known for?

    County College of Morris’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Political Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Communications
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Nursing

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  18. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    15%

    Student body

    7K

    What is Bunker Hill Community College known for?

    Bunker Hill Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Social Work
    • History
    • Psychology
    • Engineering
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Literature
    • Biology
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  19. #19

    Chabot College

    Hayward , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    34%

    Student body

    8K

    What is Chabot College known for?

    Chabot College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Nursing
    • Communications
    • History
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Economics
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  20. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    23%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Holyoke Community College known for?

    Holyoke Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
    • Social Work
    • Criminal Justice
    • Mathematics
    • Nursing
    • Chemistry

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  21. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    11%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Capital Community College known for?

    Capital Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Biology
    • Social Work
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Chemistry

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  22. #22

    Columbia College

    Sonora , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    36%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Columbia College known for?

    Columbia College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Biology
    • Communications
    • History
    • Business
    • Criminal Justice
    • Mathematics
    • Earth Sciences
    • Political Science
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  23. #23

    BGSU Firelands

    Huron , OH

    Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    11%

    Student body

    1K

    What is BGSU Firelands known for?

    BGSU Firelands’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Engineering
    REQUEST INFO
  24. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    29%

    Student body

    8K

    What is Brookdale Community College known for?

    Brookdale Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Communications
    • Education
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Social Work
    • Nursing
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  25. Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Graduation

    20%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Bossier Parish Community College known for?

    Bossier Parish Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Criminal Justice
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Nursing
    REQUEST INFO
  26. #26

    Los Angeles Valley College

    Valley Glen , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    26%

    Student body

    9K

    What is Los Angeles Valley College known for?

    Los Angeles Valley College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Communications
    • History
    • Education
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Engineering
    • Psychology
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  27. #27

    Butler Community College

    El Dorado , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    5K

    What is Butler Community College known for?

    Butler Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Education
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • Mathematics
    • Nursing
    • Law
    • Computer Science
    • Sociology
    • Literature

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  28. Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Graduation

    20%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Community College of Beaver County known for?

    Community College of Beaver County’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • History
    • Education
    • Business
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics
    • Medical
    • Literature
    • Computer Science
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  29. #29

    De Anza College

    Cupertino , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    14K

    What is De Anza College known for?

    De Anza College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Education
    • Psychology
    • History
    • Mathematics
    • Political Science
    • Medical
    • Literature
    • Communications
    REQUEST INFO
  30. Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    41%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Western Piedmont Community College known for?

    Western Piedmont Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Engineering

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  31. #31

    Sacramento City College

    Sacramento , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    26%

    Student body

    13K

    What is Sacramento City College known for?

    Sacramento City College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Philosophy
    • Education
    • Literature
    • Business
    • History
    • Mathematics
    • Political Science
    • Medical
    • Chemistry
    • Psychology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  32. #32

    City College of San Francisco

    San Francisco , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    37%

    Student body

    14K

    What is City College of San Francisco known for?

    City College of San Francisco’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Business
    • Criminal Justice
    • History
    • Education
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Political Science
    • Sociology
    • Communications

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  33. #33

    Nassau Community College

    Garden City , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    22%

    Student body

    11K

    What is Nassau Community College known for?

    Nassau Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Nursing
    • Education
    • Medical
    • Communications
    • Business
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
    • Sociology
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  34. #34

    West Valley College

    Saratoga , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    40%

    Student body

    5K

    What is West Valley College known for?

    West Valley College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Literature
    • Engineering
    • Psychology
    • Education
    • History
    • Mathematics
    • Political Science
    • Philosophy
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  35. Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    25%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Santa Fe Community College known for?

    Santa Fe Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • History
    • Engineering
    • Law
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Physics
    • Communications
    • Psychology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  36. #36

    Fullerton College

    Fullerton , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    33%

    Student body

    14K

    What is Fullerton College known for?

    Fullerton College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Law
    • History
    • Biology
    • Political Science
    • Engineering
    • Chemistry
    • Medical
    • Psychology
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  37. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    19%

    Student body

    6K

    What is Bronx Community College known for?

    Bronx Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Literature
    • Nursing
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • Computer Science
    • Social Work
    REQUEST INFO
  38. #38

    Merritt College

    Oakland , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    21%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Merritt College known for?

    Merritt College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Education
    • Business
    • Social Work
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Sociology
    • Communications
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  39. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    24%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Trinity Valley Community College known for?

    Trinity Valley Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  40. #40

    Lassen Community College

    Susanville , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    32%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Lassen Community College known for?

    Lassen Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • History
    • Medical
    • Earth Sciences

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  41. Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    34%

    Student body

    6K

    What is Northwest Mississippi Community College known for?

    Northwest Mississippi Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  42. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    18%

    Student body

    12K

    What is Mesa Community College known for?

    Mesa Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Engineering
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Communications
    REQUEST INFO
  43. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    48%

    Student body

    2K

    What is North Dakota State College of Science known for?

    North Dakota State College of Science’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Biology
    • Nursing
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  44. Tuition + fees

    $2K

    Graduation

    17%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Scottsdale Community College known for?

    Scottsdale Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Biology
    • Education
    • Social Work
    • Criminal Justice
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Computer Science
    • Chemistry
    • Psychology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  45. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    43%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Richland Community College known for?

    Richland Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Sociology
    REQUEST INFO
  46. #46

    LaGuardia Community College

    Long Island City , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    32%

    Student body

    11K

    What is LaGuardia Community College known for?

    LaGuardia Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Communications
    • Medical
    • Psychology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Computer Science
    • Literature
    • Biology
    • Nursing
    REQUEST INFO
  47. #47

    Central Wyoming College

    Riverton , WY

    Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Graduation

    33%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Central Wyoming College known for?

    Central Wyoming College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Nursing
    • Mathematics
    • Communications
    • Engineering
    • Literature
    • Earth Sciences
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  48. Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Lewis and Clark Community College known for?

    Lewis and Clark Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Medical
    • Communications
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  49. #49

    Cañada College

    Redwood City , CA

    Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Graduation

    34%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Cañada College known for?

    Cañada College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Political Science
    • History
    • Psychology
    • Mathematics
    • Communications
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Nursing

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  50. Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Graduation

    18%

    Student body

    3K

    What is Baltimore City Community College known for?

    Baltimore City Community College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Social Work
    • Computer Science
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
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